Fifty Years After LINK - Then and Now Along the Link Trail
O.WINSTON LINK (1914-2001) has earned re-noun both in railroad and photographic history. In Roanoke; Virginia, where were created the black machines which reflected the synchronized flash from Mr. Link's elaborate arrays, stands a museum dedicated to his efforts. Fittingly housed in the former Norfolk & Western passenger station, the 0. Winston Link Museum displays not only photos ranging from huge murals to many unpublished works, but also his camera and flash equipment, artifacts of the fifties such as a gravity gas pump and general store shelves, and various N&W memorabilia.
Fifty years after Mr. Link made his famous portraits of steam in the night, we revisit many of these places to see what has changed and, surprisingly, what has not. Vintage film of 1950s action at Roanoke and elsewhere blends with steam excursions of the 1980s and modern N-S freights to provide a half century perspective of change. Visit with a couple pictured in Mr. Link's convertible at Vesuvius, VA, as they reminisce about the event. Visit, in addition to Roanoke, depots at Matewan, Green Cove, and Abingdon, all of which display the lore of the N&W. The trains are totally changed. The buildings in some cases still stand. But the mountains remain, as does the hospitality of the people in the rural towns where 0. Winston Link worked his nocturnal magic over a half century ago.
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